EART Guitars H6 review: What is it?
In the fast-moving world of electric guitar, there seem to be new companies popping up right, left and centre, with each fresh-faced brand trying to leave its unique mark on this beloved instrument. Now, with the speed at which these new guitar companies are emerging, you can be forgiven for allowing some of them to pass you by. One such brand that you may have missed is EART.
EART are a budget-friendly guitar manufacturer from China that seems to be prioritising quality over quantity - a sentiment we can most definitely get behind. While their catalogue of six-strings - and four-strings - includes an ample amount of classic inspired instruments - such as straightforward S-types and blues-ready hollow bodies, they seem to be more well known for seriously affordable guitars that are aimed at the more aggressive styles of music.
Today we take a look at the fiercely spec'd EART H6 in Satin Open Pore Black, which promises a surfeit of contemporary features, such as a shred-ready five-piece, compound radius neck and stainless steel frets, as well as an exotic roasted Padauk body and striking burled maple veneer.
Built with dedicated players in mind, this wallet-friendly guitar sets out to prove that you don't need to spend big money to get a stage-ready metal axe, but does it succeed in its noble quest? Well, let's find out.
EART Guitars H6 review: Performance and verdict
Design and playability
Okay, let's start with the overall look of the H6. By all accounts, this EART looks pretty good - if a little uninspiring. This wide and flat Superstrat style guitar is clearly wearing its inspiration on its sleeve, putting us in mind of the fabulous Ibanez RGD Prestige or even Schecter's C-6 Pro and the Cort X Series. It is worth noting, however, that each of these guitars is considerably more expensive than the humble price tag of the H6 - meaning it clearly has a place in this crowded market.
Like its contemporaries, the EART H6 adopts a rather exotic combination of tonewoods to make up its body, top and neck. Roasted Padauk is used as the main material on the body, which to us, looks fairly similar to that of mahogany and even shares its fairly weighty properties. This results in a guitar that feels strong and reassuringly heavy - it most definitely doesn't feel like a cheap beginner electric guitar.
The poplar burl veneer which sits atop the body is fairly striking at first glance, and the unfilled nature of the wood leads to a top with plenty of character and natural charm. We very much like the rustic nature of this veneer, but if we were to have one very minor complaint, it would be that the top is rather thin. We feel it wouldn't take too long to wear through the paper-thin wood over time.
The neck on the H6 is a laminated construction, using a five-piece sandwich of roasted maple and walnut. Again, this is something we are used to seeing on more premium models of this style, so it's nice to see it being used here on an affordable option. The neck also opts for a compound radius, which morphs from a standard 9.5" to the flatter and more shred-friendly 14". The shift in radius seems to be most prominent around the 5th fret, but despite its sharp transition, it still feels very comfortable - especially for long legato runs and lead work.
While the hardware isn't anything to write home about, it does feel very robust and solid. The tuners are die-cast in Taiwan by Der Jung and are very responsive and smooth. The solid brass hardtail bridge also feels nice, with an uncluttered look that compliments the guitar's aesthetic.
Okay, it looks and feels the part, but how does it sound? Well, in a nutshell, pretty damn great. The tone is driven by a set of EART Custom Alnico-V humbuckers, which actually deliver a somewhat vintage style of tone - you could say it's more akin to a Gibson Les Paul than an ESP Eclipse. Yes, the pickups are hotter than that of a Gibson, but they aren't so overly aggressive that the guitar becomes a one-trick pony. In fact, while it may not look it, the H6 is actually impressively versatile, managing to hold its own on everything from bell-like clean sounds to light overdriven blues to all-out doom metal.
Of course, the players looking for a sound that could melt a face from 100 yards may want to switch out the more timid pickups for something a little heavier, but luckily, with the price of the H6 being so low, it won't completely blow the budget to load it with a set of Bareknuckle Nailbombs.
Overall we really enjoyed the tone of the EART H6. It feels responsive, articulate and has an excellent balance of lows and highs.
EART Guitars H6 review: Final thoughts
The EART H6 is up against some stiff competition in this particular corner of the guitar space. It's not only going toe-to-toe with heavy hitters such as Ibanez, Schecter, Cort and more, but it's also trying to do it while keeping the price to a minimum. Okay, this guitar may look a little derivative when compared to other metal guitars on the market, but it does offer an incredible array of specifications that, if they were offered from one of the big names, would cost twice as much.
For us, this is a fabulously playing and sounding guitar that will satisfy even the more discerning metalhead and we urge you to give one a go for yourself.
EART Guitars H6 review: Hands-on demos
Jon is just TOO LouD!!
EART Guitars H6 review: Specifications
- Model: H6
- Scale: 25.5" (648mm)
- Body: Roasted Padauk with poplar burl veneer
- Neck: 5-Piece Roasted Maple/Walnut
- Fingerboard: Rosewood, dot inlay
- Fingerboard Radius: 9.5’-14' compound radius
- Nut: Bone 42mm+ zero fret
- Fret: 24F Medium Jumbo Stainless Steel
- Neck Profile: Compound U to C shape,20+-0.5mm at 1th fret,21+-0.5mm at 12th fret
- Joint: Bolt-On
- Pickups: EART Custom Alnico V humbucker made in Korea
- Controls: 3-way switch,1 tone,1 volume
- Bridge: Fixed hardtail headless system
- Neck finish: Satin natural
- Contact: EART